A lemonade stand is a timeless way for kids to earn a little extra cash while learning the basics of managing money and starting a business. It can also be a great childhood memory and a fun family activity.
However, if you want your lemonade stand to be successful, it takes a little more work than simply setting it up and filling cups. Here’s how to maximize your earnings when selling this delicious refreshment.
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How to Have a Successful Lemonade Stand
If you want to have a profitable lemonade stand, there are some strategies you can implement. Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be all work and no play.
The following tips can help your child make money selling lemonade while having fun.
1. Pick the Right Location
It sounds cliche, but “location, location, location” rings true when you set up a neighborhood lemonade stand.
You may want to consider setting up on a street corner with plenty of foot traffic. Otherwise, selling from your driveway or front yard can be productive and safe.
Selling on days when there is a community event can also be wise since you will have more potential customers. A neighborhood yard sale is an excellent example.
Consider a residential street or a parking lot if you’re relying on customers driving a vehicle. Drivers are more likely to stop if they are going at a slow speed and there are ample parking spots.
Additionally, calmer roads can be safer than congested areas. While this may mean fewer customers, safety should be a priority.
While you won’t have to purchase TV ads or billboards, you should find ways to advertise for free.
One of the best options is for parents and friends to make free posts on social media platforms. These can include Facebook, Instagram and Nextdoor.
Children can also make yard signs to strategically place at street corners and other prominent locations. This can be similar to advertising a yard sale or a mobile car wash.
Plus, when multiple children are helping run the stand, some can hold signs and help guide traffic to the location.
Physical signs are a small expense and are easy to make. You can make copies for cheap and distribute them in public places. Printable lemonade stand signs are also available online and can save time.
Effective advertising can be well worth the investment to attract thirsty patrons and generate more revenue.
3. Establish a Goal
Setting a goal helps keep the participants focused. It also provides the inspiration necessary to be successful. The goals can differ by the age and number of children in the group.
For example, the goal for younger children might be selling for one or two hours. Earning money can be a secondary goal for this age group since this activity is more about building memories and learning life skills.
However, high school students may try to earn a particular amount to fund a goal. Potential goals can include a senior year trip, saving for college or buying a car.
You might decide to have multiple goals if you will be selling over several days or a season. These can include earning a certain amount over the season.
Alternately, you can aim for a desired daily income target to determine if the revenue is worth the effort.
Depending on the goal, telling your customers about it could generate more sales.
4. Quality Matters
You want to make sure you’re offering high-quality lemonade since this can spur customers to tell their friends, family and neighbors. Plus, they may even return for a second glass.
Country Time Lemonade is a famous brand, along with several others with similar quality and flavor. You may even look for organic products, ones with low sugar content or options with mixed flavors.
If you have the skill and ingredients, consider offering fresh-squeezed lemonade. This can taste better than a concentrate.
In addition to finding your ideal lemonade mix-to-water ratio for the best taste, consider including additional ingredients, such as mint or strawberry, to provide more options to customers.
Plus, using sturdy cups, napkins and straws is also smart to remove a potential frustration factor for customers.
5. Give It Curb Appeal
Constructing an attractive lemonade stand can catch the attention of potential customers. Unfortunately, a boring stand may give the impression you’re not offering a quality product.
It’s possible to buy a professionally-crafted stand for $500 or less. It can also double as a play area when you’re not selling.
Fortunately, you can create a unique stand with supplies that you already have at home or can purchase at a local store. You can start by using a sturdy cardboard box or folding table and decorating as necessary.
Several simple ways to make your lemonade kiosk more appealing include:
- Adding a tablecloth
- Drawing colorful signs
- Creating a menu
- Making a front fabric banner
- Painting wooden pallets
- Using helium balloons
- Wearing costumes and colorful clothing
Adding curb appeal can be an exciting way for children to personalize the stand and boost their creativity.
6. Choose the Right Pricing
Knowing how much to charge for lemonade is essential when determining your take-home profit.
Finding the best price can be a balancing act. You should first identify the going rate in your area to avoid overcharging. In most instances, it’s from $0.50 to $2 per cup, with specialty blends on the pricier end of the spectrum.
Simultaneously, ensure you’re charging enough to cover your material expenses and justify your time commitment.
You could also try letting customers decide what to pay because you might earn more than you would charge per cup.
This self-guided pricing strategy can be more effective when you’re raising money for charity since buyers know the proceeds are not for personal profit.
7. Offer More Than Lemonade
Lemonade can be your core product, but selling other beverages or snacks can diversify your income. For example, you could sell sweet tea if you live in the South.
During the cooler months, hot chocolate can be worth selling if warm drinks are in demand.
Making baked goods with affordable groceries is also worth exploring. In some instances, people might be more willing to buy food as opposed to drinks. Popular items include cookies, Rice Krispie treats, brownies and packaged snacks.
Deciding what else to sell depends on your skills and what your customers want to buy. You could branch into additional products after hearing what the most popular customer requests are.
As a side note, you should see if you need a special permit to sell certain goods.
8. Keep Charity in Mind
Selling lemonade for a charity can help you raise more money. Many people are willing to contribute a few dollars to help a noble cause or organization.
Not to mention, if you choose to donate your profits to charity, it’s a great opportunity to teach your kids about the importance of giving back.
You may decide to raise money for one of these causes:
- Animal shelters
- Children’s hospitals
- Food pantries
- Homeless shelters
- Medical bills
- Youth centers
Consider receiving contributions through digital wallets like Venmo or Cash App. This allows people who can’t come to your stand to still be able to donate.
Additionally, be sure to share the electronic giving option in social media posts or by passing out paper flyers.
9. Be Polite and Approachable
Acting kind and professional to your customers is important for any business. Being rude can cause a customer to walk away empty-handed.
Interacting with customers can be an excellent way for children to develop communication skills. For instance, they can start by saying hi and maintaining eye contact during a conversation.
You can also have both older and younger children take orders. This way, they will gain experience while allowing them to stay engaged and participate.
10. Have Fun
Running a lemonade stand requires some work. Fortunately, it can be fun because parents and children can do it together.
Better yet, it can also be a group activity to bring awareness to a cause or to raise funds for a goal.
Additionally, this side hustle is more exciting when you interact with a steady flow of customers as these conversations help the time pass quickly. Plus, you can be rewarded for your efforts.
Even if you don’t turn a profit, this can be a cheap hobby to try since it’s an easy way to have fun and develop real-world skills.
Many children dream of running a lemonade stand. It’s easy to turn this desire into a reality while being productive.
Selling lemonade can be a great money-making opportunity for a child or teen because there are minimal startup costs. Additionally, it’s possible to set up shop once for a special event or on a regular basis to potentially earn recurring income.
This side hustle idea can be an excellent starting point to develop skills that can help a child be successful in their adult profession. Most importantly, it’s a fun and creative activity.